An Anchoring and Adjustment Model of Purchase Quantity Decisions

Journal of Marketing Research (1998): 71-81

12 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2014

See all articles by Brian Wansink

Brian Wansink

Cornell University

Robert J. Kent

University of Delaware - Marketing

Steve Hoch

University of Pennsylvania - Marketing Department

Date Written: February 1, 1998

Abstract

How do consumers decide how many units to buy? Whereas prior research on individual consumers' purchases has focused primarily on purchase incidence and brand choice, the authors focus on the psychological process behind the purchase quantity decision. The authors propose that a simple anchoring and adjustment model describes how consumers make purchase quantity decisions and suggests how point-of-purchase promotions can increase sales. Two field experiments and two lab studies show that anchor-based promotions - presented as multiple-unit prices, purchase quantity limits, and suggestive selling - can increase purchase quantities. The final study shows that consumers who retrieve internal anchors can counter these anchor-based promotions depending on whether increases in unit sales reflect increased category consumption, brand switching, variety switching, store switching, or stockpiling.

Suggested Citation

Wansink, Brian and Kent, Robert J. and Hoch, Steve, An Anchoring and Adjustment Model of Purchase Quantity Decisions (February 1, 1998). Journal of Marketing Research (1998): 71-81. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2474803

Brian Wansink (Contact Author)

Cornell University ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853
United States

Robert J. Kent

University of Delaware - Marketing ( email )

Newark, DE
United States

Steve Hoch

University of Pennsylvania - Marketing Department ( email )

700 Jon M. Huntsman Hall
3730 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6340
United States

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